Sir Harrison Birtwistle
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1934-07-15
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/32fe4f94-8ea7-4dc6-acc0-0992806db30e
Sir Harrison Birtwistle

Sir Harrison Birtwistle Biography (BBC)

Harrison Birtwistle’s formative years were spent as a student of clarinet and composition at the Royal Manchester College of Music in the company of a remarkable group of young British talent: the composers Peter Maxwell Davies and Alexander Goehr, the pianist John Ogdon, and the trumpeter and conductor Elgar Howarth, among others. Their shared interest in the musical modernism of both Schoenberg and his Second Viennese School colleagues and the post-Second World War European avant-garde led to an unprecedented flowering of new musical thinking in Britain in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Birtwistle was at the heart of these developments. With key works such as the opera Punch and Judy (1966–7), Verses for Ensembles (1968–9) and the orchestral The Triumph of Time (1971–2) he established himself as a unique and exciting voice in British music.

The period from the early 1970s to the mid-1980s was dominated by his monumental ‘lyrical tragedy’ The Mask of Orpheus, which received its premiere at English National Opera in 1986. This was also a time when he worked as Musical Director at the National Theatre. It is probably true to say that nearly all his subsequent works have drawn on his experiences at the National. This is most evident in his operas and music-theatre pieces –principally Yan Tan Tethera (1983–4), Gawain (1989–91), The Second Mrs Kong (1993–4), The Last Supper (1998–9), The Io Passion (2003) and The Minotaur (2005–7) – but is also true of many of his major solo, ensemble and orchestral works, including Secret Theatre (1984), Earth Dances (1985–6), Pulse Shadows (1989–96), Harrison’s Clocks (1997–8), and a pair of recent orchestral studies, The Shadow of Night (2001) and Night’s Black Bird (2004).

A new theatre piece based on the Orpheus story, The Corridor, was premiered at the Aldeburgh Festival in June 2009, and his music will have been heard in 2009 alone by audiences as far afield as Austria and Australia, Switzerland and the Far East.

When Birtwistle was made a Companion of Honour in 2001, this was just the latest in a line of awards bestowed on him. He was knighted in 1988, and received the Grawemeyer Award in 1987 and the Siemens Prize in 1995. It would thus appear that his progress from enfant terrible to establishment figure is complete; yet his identity as a composer has remained relatively unchanged over all those years: individual, single-minded, radical, challenging. His rich contribution to the music of the late 20th and early 21st centuries is one of the great artistic achievements of our time.

Profile © Jonathan Cross

Sir Harrison Birtwistle Biography (Wikipedia)

Sir Harrison Paul Birtwistle, CH (born 15 July 1934) is a British composer.

This entry is from Wikipedia, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under an Attribution-ShareAlike Creative Commons License. If you find the biography content factually incorrect or highly offensive you can edit this article at Wikipedia. Find out more about our use of this data.



Sir Harrison Birtwistle Tracks

Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Last Supper
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The Last Supper

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Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Endless Parade
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Endless Parade
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Virelai [Sus une fontayne]
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Virelai [Sus une fontayne]
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Panic
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Panic
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Panic
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Panic
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Night's Black Bird for orchestra
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Night's Black Bird for orchestra
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Music for Aeschylus's Oresteia (Agamemnon)
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Music for Aeschylus's Oresteia (Agamemnon)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Duet for Eight Strings
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Duet for Eight Strings
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Earth dances
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Earth dances
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Deep Time
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Deep Time
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Earth Dances
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Earth Dances
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Donum Simoni
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Donum Simoni
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Mask of Orpheus - Act 2 Scene 3
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The Mask of Orpheus - Act 2 Scene 3
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Keyboard Engine, Construction for two pianos
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Keyboard Engine, Construction for two pianos
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Three Songs from The Holy Forest
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Three Songs from The Holy Forest
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Carmen arcadiae mechanicae perpetuum
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Carmen arcadiae mechanicae perpetuum
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Antiphonies (excerpt)
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Antiphonies (excerpt)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Verses for Ensembles
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Verses for Ensembles
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Message
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The Message
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Silbury Air
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Silbury Air
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Three Latin Motets from 'The Last Supper' (In supremae nocte cenae)
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Three Latin Motets from 'The Last Supper' (In supremae nocte cenae)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Harrison's Clocks - I
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Harrison's Clocks - I
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Earth Dances for orchestra
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Earth Dances for orchestra
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
9 Movements for String Quartet - Tondesfuge - Frieze 4
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9 Movements for String Quartet - Tondesfuge - Frieze 4
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
NYNM: In Broken Images
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NYNM: In Broken Images
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
'You are here and nowhere else' (Songs from the Same Earth)
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'You are here and nowhere else' (Songs from the Same Earth)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
'God's Name!' from Gawain
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'God's Name!' from Gawain

'God's Name!' from Gawain

Orchestra
The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House
Conductor
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Minotaur - Scene 5, extract
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The Minotaur - Scene 5, extract
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Theseus Game (for large ensemble with two conductors)
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Theseus Game (for large ensemble with two conductors)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Earth Dances
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Earth Dances
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Moth Requiem
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The Moth Requiem
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Pulse Sampler
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Pulse Sampler
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Deep Time (Proms 2017)
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Deep Time (Proms 2017)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Duets for Storab: IV. White Pastoral
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Duets for Storab: IV. White Pastoral
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae perpetuum
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Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae perpetuum
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Triumph of Time
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The Triumph of Time
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Exody for orchestra
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Exody for orchestra
Igor Stravinsky
The Soldier'S Tale For Narrator, Actors And Ensemble, ix. Royal March
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The Soldier'S Tale For Narrator, Actors And Ensemble, ix. Royal March
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Silbury Air
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Silbury Air
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Last Supper
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The Last Supper
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
The Message (Proms 2016)
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The Message (Proms 2016)
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
Lullaby
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Lullaby
Sir Harrison Birtwistle
5 Lessons in a frame
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5 Lessons in a frame
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Past BBC Events

Proms 2001: Prom 64
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2001-09-07T01:38:34
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2001

Proms 2001: Prom 64

Royal Albert Hall

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